The Human Rights Campaign Foundation's Municipal Equality Index, rating U. cities on how well they protect LGBT residents against discrimination, this year saw a record number of cities with a perfect 100 score — 47, up from 38 last year, 25 in 2013, and 11 in 2012, the first year the index was compiled.Among those 47 are 19 cities in states that lack comprehensive protections against anti-LGBT discrimination. These 19 cities, along with 12 others with scores greater than 85 in such states, were designated "all-stars," cities paving the way to LGBT equality, by the HRC Foundation (HRC's educational arm).
Cities also receive bonus points for such things as programs for LGBT youth or homeless people, or city-provided services for people with HIV.
No city can receive a score of more than 100, but some reached 100 with the help of bonus points.
The index, released in partnership with the Equality Federation, rates 408 cities.
They include all 50 state capitals, the nation’s 200 most populous cities, the five largest cities in every state, the communities home to each state’s two largest public universities, and an equal mix of 75 of the nation’s large, mid-size, and small municipalities with the highest proportion of same-sex couples.
Every region in the country had at least one 100-point city.
The West, Great Lakes, Mid-Atlantic, and New England regions had the densest concentration of top-scoring cities, while the Mountain, Plains, Southeast, and Southwest regions fell below the average national score of 56. Eleven percent scored 100 points; 25 percent scored over 78 points; 25 percent scored under 31 points; and five percent scored less than 10 points.